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Last Updated : Aug 23, 2017 04:33 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Nandan Nilekani likely to return as Infosys head: Sources

Clarity on Nandan Nilekani’s role is expected in the next 48 hours, sources said.

In a dramatic turn of events Infosys co-founder Nandan Nilekani is likely to return as the head of the IT bellwether, sources told CNBC-TV18. Clarity on Nilekani’s role is expected in the next 48 hours, they said.

The developments come a few hours after Narayana Murthy postponed his conference call with Infosys investors citing health issues. Murthy, who was slated to hold the conference at 6:30 pm on Wednesday, now will hold the call on August 29.

Murthy and Nilekani are yet to respond to CNBC-TV18's query.

Former CFO V Balakrishnan today said that bringing Nilekani back will be good for Infosys. "I don’t know whether any concrete talks have happened with Nandan Nilekani. It's still speculation. We don't know if he wants to come back (Nilekani). If he does, he should be made chairman Of Infosys," he told CNBC-TV18

"Seshasayee & Ravi Venkatesan should quit as they have let down shareholders. The board needs to be restructured to make any further movement,” Balakrishnan added.

On Tuesday, top fund managers and domestic institutional investors wrote to the board of Infosys pitching for the return of co-founder Nandan Nilekani in a "suitable capacity".

According to the signatories of the letter, Nilekani enjoys the confidence of customers, stakeholders and employees and his return to the board would instill credibility.

Vishal Sikka, the first non-co-founder CEO of Infosys, stepped down on Friday citing continuous distractions and increasingly personal attacks on him. In a strongly worded email to the stock exchanges, the Infosys Board blamed Murthy’s “continuous assault” as the primary reason for him putting down his papers.

Over the past few months, Infosys has been embroiled in controversy after founder NR Narayana Murthy raised issues of corporate governance at the company and questioned some of the decisions that had been taken by Sikka.

In the letter, the investors have expressed concern over these developments. They feel Nilekani would be able to facilitate the resolution of "contentious issues".

Nilekani was Infosys' CEO for five years till 2007. He left the software major in 2009 to become Chairman of the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI). Nilekani held the role till 2014 before resigning to unsuccessfully contest Lok Sabha elections. Nilekani is a serial investor in various startups.

Nilekani has yet to comment on the recent strife at the company. The Nilekani family has a 2.29 percent stake in Infosys as per the quarter ended June this year.

Infosys shares spiked more than 3 percent intraday after the reports came. At 12:43 hrs, Infosys was quoting at Rs 899.10, up Rs 21.95, or 2.50 percent.
First Published on Aug 23, 2017 12:31 pm
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